General Precious Metals
Mercenary Geologist Mickey Fulp on Uranium, Gold & How Mickey Makes Subscribers Money
Gerardo Del Real: This is Gerardo Del Real from the 2021 Beaver Creek Precious Metals Summit. Joining me today is the Mercenary Geologist, Mr. Mickey Fulp. Mickey, are we shaking hands again?
Mickey Fulp: Absolutely. Never stopped doing it myself.
Gerardo Del Real: Good, old proper handshake. How have you been, sir?
Mickey Fulp: Still got a pretty good grip. It doesn't go to waste, does it?
Gerardo Del Real: Now, for those of you that haven't seen Mickey in a bit, you may have noticed he's grown wiser. I'm trying to keep up here. Can you tell us the story behind the beard?
Mickey Fulp: I don't know. It started in November. And I've been on cameras periodically so people that follow me have seen it growing, but we'll see. We'll see. I don't think I'm going to get to a Billy Gibbons length.
Gerardo Del Real: Okay, but you're working on it.
Mickey Fulp: We'll see.
Gerardo Del Real: Let's get into why people follow you. People follow you among other things because they want your take on-
Mickey Fulp: They follow me because I've made them money-
Gerardo Del Real: There you go.
Mickey Fulp: ... for 13 years going now. So that's why I have the following. And I think it also helps I'm a geologist, so I can put ground truth to projects and deposits that your average newsletter writer probably can get fooled sometimes.
Gerardo Del Real: Absolutely.
Mickey Fulp: I don't get fooled very often, but that also means I don't like a whole lot either. So I'm pretty selective.
Gerardo Del Real: I want to get out a couple of the names that you do like, but before we get into that, tell me which commodities you're bullish on right now.
Mickey Fulp: It's the same as it's been for years with one thing that's comes and goes and has come back again. You know what? So it's gold and copper, the basis of my business. Now, I play around in other stuff. We're both in a helium deal we like right now. And I've been looking for a helium deal for five years or longer, and what has come in and gone out and recently came roaring back is uranium. I was a uranium perma-bull for way too many years. I moved off of it, just kept my positions, but that market's really gotten a boost for a couple of reasons and disparate reasons. But basically, supply-demand fundamentals is what comes into the market. So in uranium, I don't know if this a proper time, but I'm going to do it.
Gerardo Del Real: This is a great time.
Mickey Fulp: And so, what's happened in the uranium market, Sprott bought Uranium Participation Corp, which is a physical uranium holding company. They've gone in and started getting a bid on any pound of uranium that they can find, and that's really driven the price up 25% in the last couple of three weeks.
Gerardo Del Real: Sure. It broke $40 a pound here yesterday.
Mickey Fulp: Yup. Yup. And the curve is exponential so that's probably not going to hold eventually, but ride the ride.
Gerardo Del Real: So how do you see that ride playing out? Is there something that you look to to kind of warn you that it's getting a little bubbly?
Mickey Fulp: The only thing I would look at the chart of the spot price and say, "Wow, this has gone up 25%." Really, it started moving up, what, mid-August maybe, incrementally from 30 bucks a pound and then it really popped last week. So a chart looks frothy, if you will, exponential chart, but we've seen this happen before. And the last time it really happened strongly was in late 2010, 2011. It made to 75 bucks a pound. A time before that in '06, it got to $135, $140 a pound. That's a spot price. But there's some fundamental reasons in the business why uranium should be increasing, we just have to see how it plays out. It's the most obscure, heavily traded market in the world, and totally non-transparent. Even insiders in the business who trade uranium can't always tell you what's going on.
Gerardo Del Real: Do you think that's what's attracting people to the Sprott Physical Trust? You can go on their site, they can tell you the net value. It's on the page. They can tell you exactly how many pounds they own, how many they're buying per day. It seems like a very transparent model that's meant to draw in the speculator that's looking for that.
Mickey Fulp: Well, but that's not a new model. That was Uranium Participation Corp. It just took a buyer like Sprott, and I have no doubt that Rick Rule's a big part of this too. He's been a uranium perma-bull for as long or longer than I have, and he never wavered off of that position. Although, I did for a while because I got tired of predicting when the spot price is going to go up and be wrong. You can only be wrong four or five years in a row and you go, "I got to quit doing this. This makes no sense." So we'll see where it goes.
Gerardo Del Real: Before we get off of that topic, any names in this space that you like?
Mickey Fulp: Well, I am a U.S. producer developer sort, so UEC, Uranium Energy Corp, which also has Rick Rule as a big shareholder, and Energy Fuels or the White Mesa Mill. Those are obvious choices. And we just had one taken out yesterday.
Gerardo Del Real: Azarga Uranium.
Mickey Fulp: Azarga. And if people go back and listen to some of my podcasts over the last six months or so or maybe the last year, I always say, and this little junior Azarga. You predicted a month or so ago that it was on the verge of takeout. Maybe you had some information. I was not privy, but I listened to that.
Gerardo Del Real: Just great fundamentals, Mickey.
Mickey Fulp: Right. And so, those would be my choices. The other thing, driving the uranium price is geopolitical. And that's the world has recognized finally that if we're going to have a green economy, it's the only thing we can use for base load electricity that does not involve consuming fossil fuels. So the world is recognizing and you're seeing Slovakia started up a reactor last week. It's all over the world this has gone on now, and not just China and India, which was where the demand was for a long time.
And the Dems, put it in their infrastructure bill, pro-uranium. It was the first time since 1972 that the Democrats platform was pro-nuclear energy.
Gerardo Del Real: Yeah. It seems to have bipartisan support. It started under the Trump administration and continued on. Let's hope that's the case.
Mickey Fulp: And so, the thing, waking up in the middle of the night every once in a while, and these thoughts start going through your brain, oftentimes it happens at 4:00 AM. So I woke up a couple of days ago and I thought, "What if as the price..." It was at 37 bucks. I go, "What if the O-Biden administration did what the Obama administration did for eight straight years?" And when the spot price would go up, they dumped 5 to 7 million pounds of uranium on the open market and kill the spot market. I hope that doesn't happen, but these guys are a bit of a wild card right now.
Gerardo Del Real: Yeah. Trusting politicians is a dicey game, right?
Mickey Fulp: Oh, never do that, mate, on either side or however many sides there are.
Gerardo Del Real: Agreed. So you're a uranium bull. We have to talk gold before I let you go, Mickey, because it is, after all, a precious metal summit. I joked last week that everybody was going to see each other at the Precious Metals Summit and congratulate each other for being uranium bulls, right? And here, we are doing exactly that because that's where the price action has been. Gold is consolidated for the past 12 months. What do you see for Q4 here?
Mickey Fulp: I predicted that gold got way ahead of itself. I was selling all last summer as the stocks went hyperbolic, I'm selling into that because what I saw was that 3 billion bucks, a private placement money, was going to become free trading in November, December, January, February, and it was going to kill the market. And it has, and the market's not come back, gold below $1,800. Again today, it's stuck in neutral. There's fundamental reasons why gold should be higher, but right now, be happy with it. It probably presents buying opportunities in gold stocks that are especially undervalued. And more importantly, at least for me is it presents buying opportunities of physical gold. I bought a significant tranche of physical gold last two or three weeks ago when it took that dip below $1,800. So it is going to go higher, I don't know when. I think it's a longer term play perhaps on gold.
Gerardo Del Real: Any names in that space that you liked before I let you go, Mickey?
Mickey Fulp: Let's take a look at Allegiant Gold in Nevada, a company that I have owned for quite some time and has gone in and out a sponsorship, could be some catalysts on the horizon. I don't know specifically. Absolutely, I don't know specifically about anything, but got some really good projects, prospect-
Gerardo Del Real: Good management, active management team.
Mickey Fulp: ... excellent management team, the world's premier gold discovery geologist, Andy Wallace, in Nevada. Good management, very concerned about tight share structures. It's been kind of mucking about in the upper 30-plus or minus range, maybe gotten up 40, 41, but a well-managed company with good projects in Nevada.
Gerardo Del Real: It's a great exploration pick. Any near term producers or exploration companies that already have robust asset bases?
Mickey Fulp: At this stage, nothing has caught my eye. But what has caught my eye is gold funds, mutual funds. So I am a holder of what used to be the Oppenheimer Gold Mutual Fund. It's now Invesco, and it has taken a pretty good hit this year. I think it's trading somewhere in the low to mid-$40 range. So that's a basket of uranium producers all the way from mid-tier, small or mid-tiers, large producers, and that may be a way to play the market. Not trying to get your double or your 10 bagger, but I got some of those shares in my IRA or one of my IRAs.
Gerardo Del Real: We talked uranium, we talked gold. You got some excellent picks. I would talk Cardinals and Cubs. Go, Cubs, but neither of our teams are very good right now. So we'll save that for next time.
Mickey Fulp: And I have to tell you, my friend, you said neither team was very good, the Cardinals are still one game above 500. They're still right in the middle of the second wildcard hunt. And so, what about those Cubs?
Gerardo Del Real: I wish you luck. And I think this time next year, we'll be having a different conversation.
Mickey Fulp: Oh, you think their tank and rebuild is going to happen that fast?
Gerardo Del Real: I do. I do. We have some good, young talent and we have some money to spend in the off-season.
Mickey Fulp: And here's what you and I always have is an ongoing bet of which team finishes the season with a better record and-
Gerardo Del Real: I sense a bottle of wine coming your way, Mickey.
Mickey Fulp: And I owe you one from last year.
Gerardo Del Real: There you go. Hopefully, we can do that in New Orleans.
Mickey Fulp: I hope so.
Gerardo Del Real: Mickey, pleasure as always. Thank you.
Mickey Fulp: Thank you, my friend.